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My initial reaction to the Deluxe 17â€ Razor Strop is somewhat of a disappointment. TS made the decision between Jemicoâ€™s 18â€ Strop and the Deluxe easy as they were out of the Jemico. I think that the strop will be serviceable, and better then the one that I have been using that I had a local craftsman make. The stated 17â€ (actually 17 Â½â€) includes the handle leaving 11â€ of working surface. I believe that the Jemico will give more working surface than the inch difference listed as there is no handle as such. My disappointment lies mainly in the fact that it lacks the substance, for a lack of a better word, that I remember in the strops had in the past, and the ones with which I would get a whipping with when I really misbehaved. This doesnâ€™t even come close to those, although I believe the Deluxe 17â€ Strop will be functional. I just received it today and stropped yesterday, and do not care to repeat it this soon. I bought it for my swords and knives. Since ordering it I decided to buy a razor out of nostalgia which hasnâ€™t arrived yet.A word about the Stropping Paste: What TS is selling comes in a small tube measuring about Â½â€x2â€ for $3. There is no information on the tube. I have no doubt that it will work. In the old days Jewelerâ€™s Rouge was used. Maybe there were other compounds, but Jewelerâ€™s Rouge is what I remember. Not having any access to that I have been substituting Metal Glo, and it works fine. I would prefer Jewelerâ€™s Rouge as it is a solid. Both the Stropping Paste and Metal Glo are pastes. The Metal Glo will dry in time but this is not really a problem. The characteristics of the Stropping Paste are unknown to me, but I expect it may dry also with time also. The 1.75 oz. of Metal Glo as advertised by TS comes in a tube about 1â€ x 4 Â½â€ for $5. Thatâ€™s about 8 times the volume than the Stropping Paste for just over half again the price. One point about Metal Glo: The Metal Glo that I am using is some that I bought more than 5 years ago from another vendor, a little goes a long ways. The tubes are black/silver with the word â€œMetalâ€ in red and â€œGloâ€ in white, and carries United Cutlery Corp. manufacturing ID. What TS is selling as Metal Glo comes in a yellow tube marked Stanley. I donâ€™t see the words â€œMetal Gloâ€ in TSâ€™s photo on the tube. Nor will my Metal Glo come out in drops as one reviewer reported, nor has it an odor as two reviewers reported with TSâ€™s Metal Glo. Perhaps we are speaking of two different products using the name Metal Glo.FYI, the black that will form on the strop is the metal that was removed from the blade. That should be cleaned off when the build up becomes excessive. Canâ€™t remember what the old timers used, but with the strop that I had made at first I used Ajax Cleanser and water, then re-oiled the leather after drying. If you use this method do not dry with heat. And be forewarned that the cleanser is abrasive, although I can see no adverse effects on the leather, so make sure that you completely remove the cleanser after cleaning. Lately I have been using WD-40 and wiping with a Bounty paper towel. This will have to be repeated until the traces of the metal are gone. Also, store your strop in a manner that will protect it from dirt. Jewelerâ€™s Rouge is dry, the creams can collect grit. This is an after thought but somebody will get it backwards so; draw the blade spine first along the strop, the opposite from using a stone, where the cutting edge leads. Otherwise you will damage the strop.
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